It was with quite some trepidation that I approached this event. After all, in my last outing on this course I’d been splattered over the tarmac by two children out on the course. And my 2013 season has hardly been noted by glory – mostly due to illness and injury. Indeed I managed to work myself up into a state of quite some apprehension. On the morning I woke stupidly early and saw the heavy frost. Fortunately the early sun soon put paid to the frost, and it was rather nice as I rode out to the event HQ at the Marston Vale Forest Centre.
By the time I rode up to the start, things had got a bit colder: a cold breeze had sprung up, and the sky had become rather overcast. Still, I lined up at the appointed time and shot off down the starting descent. I felt a bit nervy with the bike twitching in a slight crosswind, though I think this is just me being a bit out of practice on the TT bike.
Reaching the bottom of the descent, and set into a decent rhythm and soon crossed the first RAB. This is a bit awkward, and I’ve never got through on the tri-bars. Once out the other side, I pressed on to the turn. After the turn, things seemed to go a bit pear-shaped, as there was a stiff old headwind. At least the back pain that has bedevilled me for the last month or so was noticeable by its absence. Once again across the roundabout, and I was photographed a second time. It turned out the photographer was JB, who kindly tweeted them. Here’s one, though I do look a bit portly as a consequence on not training enough!
After that ‘photo-op’, I continued my grovel to the finish line which I crossed in an estimated 24:11. Not brilliant, so I wasn’t too bothered that the result on the board at the HQ was 24:21. I was just delighted my back wasn’t convulsed in pain.
All in all, a reasonably OK race. Well, apart from the time! Here’s the Garmin trace: